What do we mean by "culture," "theory," and "video game"? How does the
work we will do in this course differ from what you might expect to
find in a walkthrough written by a fan, a review written by a
journalist, or a market study written by a game developer? How do
scholars look at the subjects they study, and how does the study of
video games fit into the context of a liberal arts education? How will
this class work?
I plan to make "EL 250: MGW: Videogaming" my full-time job for the
next three weeks, and I suggest that you do the same. Since we're
meeting for a total of 14 weekdays (three weeks, excluding Martin
Luther King Day), each day during J-Term time we have to cover what we
would cover during a week of regular classes in a semester-long
course. During that ordinary
week, you would meet for 2 1/2 hours in the classroom, and have an
additional 2-3 hours worth of homework for each hour in class. For each
day the class meets, you should plan to commit
several hours to reading assigned texts and doing homework, and another
another hour or so for
interacting with your peers and me in our online, blog-based
I've tried to
pace the course so that we're heavy on lectures, reading and short exercises in the
beginning, but lighter on that stuff and heavier on your own in-depth projects towards the end.
everyone has the option of getting a few extra days to work on the
final paper by taking an incomplete (as long as you have kept up in all
your other work).
Note that two short assignments, Ex 1a (a short game review) and Ex
1b (a comparison between a traditional game review and a "new games
journalism" article from the day's assigned readings) are due on the
second day of classes, Jan 4. There are separate web pages on this
site for each of those assignments, just as there are separate pages
for pretty much other component of the course.
To see what else is due
tomorrow, click on the numeral for Jan 4 on the calendar in the marign
of this page.